England out for record 644, 364-run lead
Matt Prior scored the third hundred of the innings as England amassed 644, its highest total on Australian soil, and took a 364-run first-innings lead in the fifth Ashes test at the Sydney Cricket Ground.cricket Updated: Jan 06, 2011 09:13 IST
Matt Prior scored the third hundred of the innings as England amassed 644, its highest total on Australian soil, and took a 364-run first-innings lead in the fifth Ashes test. Chris Tremlett (12) was the last wicket to fall on Thursday, caught behind off Ben Hilfenhaus eight minutes after the lunch interval on day four at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
The total topped the 636 which Wally Hammond's lineup scored in the 1928-29 series at the Sydney Cricket Ground as England's highest in Australia and kept the English on course for its first test series win in Australia since 1987.
England has a 2-1 lead and has already endured it will retain the Ashes.
Alastair Cook (189) and Ian Bell (115) scored centuries on Wednesday and Prior continued the batting onslaught against the Australian bowling attack.
The wicketkeeper-batsman shared a 102-run stand for the eighth wicket with Tim Bresnan (35), who batted for almost two hours Thursday until he edged a Mitchell Johnson delivery to Michael Clarke at second slip.
Graeme Swann finished unbeaten on 36 when Tremlett was dismissed for 12, ending a 35-run last wicket stand.
The visitors resumed Thursday at 488-7 after batting all all day Wednesday, when Cook took his series tally to 776 runs to become the second-highest English runscorer in an Ashes series in Australia. Hammond scored 905 in 1928-29.
Prior wasted no time reaching his fourth test hundred, hitting Steven Smith for a boundary to bring up triple figures from 109 balls before he was caught behind chasing a wide Hilfenhaus delivery.
Australia finally got the benefit of a TV umpire's review, with umpire Billy Bowden referring Prior's dismissal to the third official to check for a Hilfenhaus no-ball. After several minutes, the TV umpire Tony Hill ruled that part of Hilfenhaus' front foot did touch down behind the crease. The Australians had a similar decision go against them when Cook was on 46 and miscued a catch off left-arm spinner. Bowden referred the decision to Hill, who adjudged a no-ball based on video replays.
Johnson conceded 20 runs in one over as Swann chased quick runs, another low point for the Australian attack in a demoralizing series. Johnson's figures were 4-168 from 36 overs, while Hilfenhaus had 3-121.